Ok, let me start by saying I do not work for EA, or DICE, or any other company involved in the making of this fine game. I did not get a free copy to review, nor was I asked to write this. I’m just a regular gamer that bought this game like everyone else.
So, I got the Limited Edition pre-order, duh…didn’t everyone? Let me start with an overview, I LOVE THIS GAME! Best shooter I’ve played in years, ranked right up there with Battlefield 2, Medal of Honor: Spearhead, and COD Modern Warfare (yes the COD franchise was fun before Activision put their heads in their collective backsides). I could see myself and my clan playing this game for 5 years+ like we used to with a good game.
I’m not a professional game reviewer so going to sort of be doing this by the seat of my pants. I’m not sure which categories to put in, or what the proper layout is, I’m just going to start typing and hope it makes sense when I get done.
Gameplay: Controls are familiar, pretty much like BF2 with some added commands for the new features. The game feels like BF2, with some of the added finesse of Bad Company 2 via the Frostbite engine. Vehicles and weapons feel more substantial than they did in BF2 (I know, I hate that phrase too but in a sense it’s fitting. Weapon recoil, damage, sound, all come together to give good immersion.) The exploding buildings, rubble that does damage, and the reactions of the environment all come together to make quite a fun experience.
Maps: A great mix of small, large, and huge maps, with good choices between ground, air, and infantry only setups. Some maps are better suited to specific game types, but overall I think the variety of maps, and the design, is good.
Added Features: This game is full of new stuff that I like a lot! The knife death scene, when you sneak up on someone and go for the knife, you get a little cutscene showing your soldier turn the guy around, knife him and take his dog tags. I know, the victim is helpless to stop it once it starts and that might seem unfair, but if you miss, you almost always die. Fair trade off. Also like that the knife doesn’t kill in one hit if you don’t get the ‘killing blow’ cutscene. Also like that you have to switch to secondary weapons in vehicles. Used to, if your tank had a main gun, and a secondary, you could fire one with left mouse, and the other with right mouse. Had a very devastating effect in BF2. Lots of little things too. Takes time to get up after being prone, negating the old ‘dolphin dive’ that allowed people to avoid fire while shooting in mid air, and jump back up shooting the whole time. Recovery time when switching weapons, makes sense that you can’t shoot a guy while you are bringing your rifle from your back to ready position. Oh, and when you are revived by a medic, you don’t hop back up shooting right away, you come back laying prone with your pistol, you have to get back up. There’s tons more but those are the ones that come to mind.
Graphics and sound: For me this is huge. I love immersive games, where I forget that I’m at home sitting at a computer. Nothing contributes to this than good graphics and amazing sound. This game has both. The graphics are the best I’ve seen, crisp, clear, and eye popping. The sound is fantastic, echoing of gunfire from the distance, whizzing of bullets, snap of rifle fire, it’s all there. Never heard sounds like this in a shooter before. Watching the tracers fly into the sky at helicopters and jets, explosions, mortars, all of it lends to a truly chaotic, and awesome experience.
My beefs: Ok, there are a couple, but mostly just things I miss from a nostalgic perspective. I miss commander mode. I loved doing that, giving commands, dropping supplies, vehicles, etc. I also wish we had squad VOIP (in game voice) without having to make parties in battlelog. Being able to communicate in voice is one of the keys to winning.
All in all, I give it a 8 out of 10. I don’t think any game is perfect, but this one is close. Some issues at release of course, that’s expected, but they seem to be handling it fine. Things are getting fixed, and the dev teams seems to be listening to the community. Can’t wait for the Strike and Karkand expansion.